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BACKGROUND - Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) constitutes 0.5% of childhood malignancies and exhibits poor prognosis. Complete tumor extirpation either by partial liver resection (LR) or liver transplantation (LT) is the only curative treatment. Due to the poor initial outcomes of LT, LR has remained the mainstay of treatment for all but select children fulfilling the Milan criteria (originally designed for adults).
METHODS - We conducted a retrospective cohort study of pediatric HCC patients (younger than 18 years of age) registered in the Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results database between 2004 and 2015. Survival analysis was performed by means of Kaplan-Meier methods, 2-sided stratified log-rank tests, and Cox regression models.
RESULTS - Of 127 children with HCC, 46 did not undergo operation (36.2%), 32 underwent LT (25.2%), and 49 underwent LR (38.6%). Using the Kaplan-Meier method, the 5-year cancer-specific survival (CSS) rates for LT and LR were 87% and 63%, respectively. LT exhibited superior CSS vs LR (log-rank, p = 0.007). For T1 stage, LT showed equivalent CSS compared with LR (log-rank, p = 0.23), and for T2 and T3 stage, LT exhibited superior CSS (log-rank, p = 0.047 and p = 0.01, respectively). On multivariable Cox regression analysis, T3/T4 stage (adjusted hazard ratio 13.63; 95% CI, 2.9 to 64.07; p = 0.001), and LR (adjusted hazard ratio 7.51; 95% CI, 2.07 to 27.29; p = 0.002) were found to be independently associated with cancer-specific mortality. Fibrolamellar histology and lymph node status were not found to be associated with mortality.
CONCLUSIONS - Our findings suggest that children diagnosed with nonmetastatic advanced-stage HCC have a favorable prognosis after LT compared with LR. Early inclusion of an LT consultation after the initial diagnosis is warranted, especially in children with unresectable HCC or when complete tumor extirpation with LR is not feasible.
Copyright © 2020 American College of Surgeons. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Posttransplantation diabetes mellitus (PTDM) is a common and significant complication related to immunosuppressive agents required to prevent organ or cell transplant rejection. To elucidate the effects of 2 commonly used agents, the calcineurin inhibitor tacrolimus (TAC) and the mTOR inhibitor sirolimus (SIR), on islet function and test whether these effects could be reversed or prevented, we investigated human islets transplanted into immunodeficient mice treated with TAC or SIR at clinically relevant levels. Both TAC and SIR impaired insulin secretion in fasted and/or stimulated conditions. Treatment with TAC or SIR increased amyloid deposition and islet macrophages, disrupted insulin granule formation, and induced broad transcriptional dysregulation related to peptide processing, ion/calcium flux, and the extracellular matrix; however, it did not affect regulation of β cell mass. Interestingly, these β cell abnormalities reversed after withdrawal of drug treatment. Furthermore, cotreatment with a GLP-1 receptor agonist completely prevented TAC-induced β cell dysfunction and partially prevented SIR-induced β cell dysfunction. These results highlight the importance of both calcineurin and mTOR signaling in normal human β cell function in vivo and suggest that modulation of these pathways may prevent or ameliorate PTDM.
Fulminant myocarditis (FM) is an uncommon syndrome characterized by sudden and severe diffuse cardiac inflammation often leading to death resulting from cardiogenic shock, ventricular arrhythmias, or multiorgan system failure. Historically, FM was almost exclusively diagnosed at autopsy. By definition, all patients with FM will need some form of inotropic or mechanical circulatory support to maintain end-organ perfusion until transplantation or recovery. Specific subtypes of FM may respond to immunomodulatory therapy in addition to guideline-directed medical care. Despite the increasing availability of circulatory support, orthotopic heart transplantation, and disease-specific treatments, patients with FM experience significant morbidity and mortality as a result of a delay in diagnosis and initiation of circulatory support and lack of appropriately trained specialists to manage the condition. This scientific statement outlines the resources necessary to manage the spectrum of FM, including extracorporeal life support, percutaneous and durable ventricular assist devices, transplantation capabilities, and specialists in advanced heart failure, cardiothoracic surgery, cardiac pathology, immunology, and infectious disease. Education of frontline providers who are most likely to encounter FM first is essential to increase timely access to appropriately resourced facilities, to prevent multiorgan system failure, and to tailor disease-specific therapy as early as possible in the disease process.
Human but not mouse islets transplanted into immunodeficient NSG mice effectively accumulate lipid droplets (LDs). Because chronic lipid exposure is associated with islet β-cell dysfunction, we investigated LD accumulation in the intact human and mouse pancreas over a range of ages and states of diabetes. Very few LDs were found in normal human juvenile pancreatic acinar and islet cells, with numbers subsequently increasing throughout adulthood. While accumulation appeared evenly distributed in postjuvenile acinar and islet cells in donors without diabetes, LDs were enriched in islet α- and β-cells from donors with type 2 diabetes (T2D). LDs were also found in the islet β-like cells produced from human embryonic cell-derived β-cell clusters. In contrast, LD accumulation was nearly undetectable in the adult rodent pancreas, even in hyperglycemic and hyperlipidemic models or 1.5-year-old mice. Taken together, there appear to be significant differences in pancreas islet cell lipid handling between species, and the human juvenile and adult cell populations. Moreover, our results suggest that LD enrichment could be impactful to T2D islet cell function.
© 2019 by the American Diabetes Association.
OBJECTIVE - In the randomised scleroderma: Cyclophosphamide Or Transplantation (SCOT trial) (NCT00114530), myeloablation, followed by haematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT), led to improved clinical outcomes compared with monthly cyclophosphamide (CYC) treatment in systemic sclerosis (SSc). Herein, the study aimed to determine global molecular changes at the whole blood transcript and serum protein levels ensuing from HSCT in comparison to intravenous monthly CYC in 62 participants enrolled in the SCOT study.
METHODS - Global transcript studies were performed at pretreatment baseline, 8 months and 26 months postrandomisation using Illumina HT-12 arrays. Levels of 102 proteins were measured in the concomitantly collected serum samples.
RESULTS - At the baseline visit, interferon (IFN) and neutrophil transcript modules were upregulated and the cytotoxic/NK module was downregulated in SSc compared with unaffected controls. A paired comparison of the 26 months to the baseline samples revealed a significant decrease of the IFN and neutrophil modules and an increase in the cytotoxic/NK module in the HSCT arm while there was no significant change in the CYC control arm. Also, a composite score of correlating serum proteins with IFN and neutrophil transcript modules, as well as a multilevel analysis showed significant changes in SSc molecular signatures after HSCT while similar changes were not observed in the CYC arm. Lastly, a decline in the IFN and neutrophil modules was associated with an improvement in pulmonary forced vital capacity and an increase in the cytotoxic/NK module correlated with improvement in skin score.
CONCLUSION - HSCT contrary to conventional treatment leads to a significant 'correction' in disease-related molecular signatures.
© Author(s) (or their employer(s)) 2019. No commercial re-use. See rights and permissions. Published by BMJ.
Germline mutations in SAMD9 and SAMD9L genes cause MIRAGE (myelodysplasia, infection, restriction of growth, adrenal hypoplasia, genital phenotypes, and enteropathy) (OMIM: *610456) and ataxia-pancytopenia (OMIM: *611170) syndromes, respectively, and are associated with chromosome 7 deletions, myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS), and bone marrow failure. In this retrospective series, we report outcomes of allogeneic hematopoietic cell transplantation (HCT) in patients with hematologic disorders associated with SAMD9/SAMD9L mutations. Twelve patients underwent allogeneic HCT for MDS (n = 10), congenital amegakaryocytic thrombocytopenia (n = 1), and dyskeratosis congenita (n = 1). Exome sequencing revealed heterozygous mutations in SAMD9 (n = 6) or SAMD9L (n = 6) genes. Four SAMD9 patients had features of MIRAGE syndrome. Median age at HCT was 2.8 years (range, 1.2 to 12.8 years). Conditioning was myeloablative in 9 cases and reduced intensity in 3 cases. Syndrome-related comorbidities (diarrhea, infections, adrenal insufficiency, malnutrition, and electrolyte imbalance) were present in MIRAGE syndrome cases. One patient with a familial SAMD9L mutation, MDS, and morbid obesity failed to engraft and died of refractory acute myeloid leukemia. The other 11 patients achieved neutrophil engraftment. Acute post-transplant course was complicated by syndrome-related comorbidities in MIRAGE cases. A patient with SAMD9L-associated MDS died of diffuse alveolar hemorrhage. The other 10 patients had resolution of hematologic disorder and sustained peripheral blood donor chimerism. Ten of 12 patients were alive with a median follow-up of 3.1 years (range, 0.1 to 14.7 years). More data are needed to refine transplant approaches in SAMD9/SAMD9L patients with significant comorbidities and to develop guidelines for their long-term follow-up.
Copyright © 2019 American Society for Transplantation and Cellular Therapy. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Fibrosis accompanying wound healing can drive the failure of many different organs. Activated fibroblasts are the principal determinants of post-injury pathological fibrosis along with physiological repair, making them a difficult therapeutic target. Although activated fibroblasts are phenotypically heterogeneous, they are not recognized as distinct functional entities. Using mice that express GFP under the FSP1 or αSMA promoter, we characterized two non-overlapping fibroblast subtypes from mouse hearts after myocardial infarction. Here, we report the identification of FSP1-GFP cells as a non-pericyte, non-hematopoietic fibroblast subpopulation with a predominant pro-angiogenic role, characterized by in vitro phenotypic/cellular/ultrastructural studies and in vivo granulation tissue formation assays combined with transcriptomics and proteomics. This work identifies a fibroblast subtype that is functionally distinct from the pro-fibrotic αSMA-expressing myofibroblast subtype. Our study has the potential to shift our focus towards viewing fibroblasts as molecularly and functionally heterogeneous and provides a paradigm to approach treatment for organ fibrosis.
PURPOSE - To assess whether BIO 300, a synthetic genistein nanosuspension, improves the therapeutic index in prostate cancer treatment by preventing radiation-induced erectile dysfunction (ED) without reducing tumor radiosensitivity.
METHODS AND MATERIALS - Male Sprague-Dawley rats were exposed to 25 Gy of 220-kV prostate-confined x-rays. Animals were randomized to receive sham radiation therapy (RT), RT alone, RT with daily BIO 300 at 2 experimental dosing regimens, or RT with daily genistein. Erectile response was evaluated over time. Penile shaft tissue was harvested for histologic analyses. Murine xenograft studies using prostate cancer cell lines determined the effects of BIO 300 dosing on RT efficacy.
RESULTS - Prostate-confined RT significantly decreased apomorphine-induced erectile response (P < .05 vs sham RT). Erection frequency in animals receiving prophylactic treatment with BIO 300 starting 3 days before RT was similar to sham controls after RT. Treatment with synthetic genistein did not mitigate loss in erectile frequency. At week 14, post-RT treatment with BIO 300 resulted in significantly higher quality of erectile function compared with both the RT arm and the RT arm receiving genistein starting 3 days before irradiation (P < .05). In hormone-sensitive and insensitive prostate tumor-bearing mice, BIO 300 administration did not negatively affect radiation-induced tumor growth delay.
CONCLUSIONS - BIO 300 prevents radiation-induced ED, measured by erection frequency, erectile function, and erection quality, when administered 3 days before RT and continued daily for up to 14 weeks. Data also suggest that BIO 300 administered starting 2 hours after RT mitigates radiation-induced ED. Data provide strong nonclinical evidence to support clinical translation of BIO 300 for mitigation of ED while maintaining treatment response to RT.
Copyright © 2019. Published by Elsevier Inc.
The complexity of modern in vivo magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) methods in oncology has dramatically changed in the last 10 years. The field has long since moved passed its (unparalleled) ability to form images with exquisite soft-tissue contrast and morphology, allowing for the enhanced identification of primary tumors and metastatic disease. Currently, it is not uncommon to acquire images related to blood flow, cellularity, and macromolecular content in the clinical setting. The acquisition of images related to metabolism, hypoxia, pH, and tissue stiffness are also becoming common. All of these techniques have had some component of their invention, development, refinement, validation, and initial applications in the preclinical setting using in vivo animal models of cancer. In this review, we discuss the genesis of quantitative MRI methods that have been successfully translated from preclinical research and developed into clinical applications. These include methods that interrogate perfusion, diffusion, pH, hypoxia, macromolecular content, and tissue mechanical properties for improving detection, staging, and response monitoring of cancer. For each of these techniques, we summarize the 1) underlying biological mechanism(s); 2) preclinical applications; 3) available repeatability and reproducibility data; 4) clinical applications; and 5) limitations of the technique. We conclude with a discussion of lessons learned from translating MRI methods from the preclinical to clinical setting, and a presentation of four fundamental problems in cancer imaging that, if solved, would result in a profound improvement in the lives of oncology patients. Level of Evidence: 5 Technical Efficacy: Stage 3 J. Magn. Reson. Imaging 2019;50:1377-1392.
© 2019 International Society for Magnetic Resonance in Medicine.